Harlem woman kidnapped from store, beaten, found
Law enforcement agencies in two states are investigating the Wednesday kidnapping of a Harlem woman.
The 62-year-old woman said she was abducted from a Harlem grocery store and later found near Greenwood, S.C., according to authorities. She was found by a South Carolina police officer in a wooded area off Highway 25 near her vehicle.
"A man supposedly approached her, pulled out a gun and got her into her car and made her drive over here to our jurisdiction," said Greenwood County sheriff's Maj. John Murray. "He got her out of the car, took her into the woods and beat her about the face and head. She says she blacked out and when she woke up he was gone."
The woman told local authorities that her kidnapper also stripped off her clothes, kicked her and beat her head into a tree until she passed out, said Harlem Public Safety Lt. Kelvin Hartwell.
Hartwell said that the woman told local authorities that her kidnapper was hiding in her SUV and pulled a gun on her after she left the store and got back into her vehicle.
Police said the woman described her kidnapper as a white, in his late 40s or early 50s and had a slim build. She told Greenwood County investigators that he had gray hair, but Hartwell said she described the kidnapper as having dark brown or black hair.
Hartwell said that the woman further told him that the suspect was wearing a blue shirt, denim pants and had a tattoo of a tribal design on his left wrist.
Harlem authorities said the kidnapping occurred at the Harlem IGA at 575 W. Milledgeville Road.
"We need help from anybody at the store between 3 and 5 (p.m.) and saw any suspicious men in the area," Murray said.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division are assisting in the investigation.
Also this week, the woman complained to police that her home was burglarized and that someone had put a rattlesnake in her vehicle, Hartwell said.
Anyone with information should call the Harlem Department of Public Safety at (706) 556-6262 or the Greenwood County Sheriff's Office at (864) 943-8052.
The following accounts were taken from reports from the Columbia County Sheriff's Office. Additional reports are available at www.columbiacountyso.org:
Harlem woman assaulted by erratic man with gun
A Harlem woman told police t hat a man with a gun assaulted her.
The 70-year-old said that about 2:15 p.m. Monday, she stopped by her son's Harlem home and saw an unfamiliar car in the driveway and a door to the home open. As she backed up, a young man ran out of the house and asked who lived there. She asked him whether he knew her son, and he asked her son's name. As she called her son's number, the man took her phone, pulled a handgun and ordered her inside the house with him.
She refused, saying she was afraid the man would hurt her, so he went back inside. As she tried to back out again, the man got into a dark-blue or black Ford Bronco or Chevy Blazer and drove up beside her. He got out and asked her for money. She told him she wanted her phone, so he wiped it off and gave it back to her, but then demanded her glasses.
He left after a neighbor drove into the driveway on an all-terrain vehicle. Later, a woman living at the home arrived and said a $500 tool kit and a .22-caliber rifle were missing.
The assailant was white, in his late 20s or early 30s and clean-shaven with bumps on his face. He wore a black cap, black T-shirt, shorts and white sneakers.
Boy charged with starting fire that destroyed car
An Augusta boy was charged Monday with a fire that destroyed a car.
Employees of Haven of Hope Services, a long-term care facility on Gibbs Road near Grovetown, told police that between 4:30 and 5:20 p.m., someone set fire to a 1987 Ford Mustang parked in back. An employee said a 12-year-old told the employee's wife about the fire.
The boy told police he started the fire while playing in the area. He said he found a nearly empty gas can, carried it to the car and accidentally spilled it near the vehicle.
He said he ignited the gas with a lighter, and when he couldn't control the fire he ran away.
The youth said he tossed the gas can and lighter into nearby woods. After a while, the boy realized the fire was still burning and told the facility's owner.
The boy was taken into custody, then released to his father.
Guns, jewelry, cash stolen from Appling residence
An Appling woman told police Monday that guns, jewelry and cash were stolen fro her home.
The 53-year-old said that between 11:45 a.m. and 2:15 p.m., someone broke open the back door. She said a $1,500 piece of jewelry,$3,440 worth of guns and $500 were missing.
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